Book Reviews
Book Review of 'Playing It My Way'
Sachin Tendulkar: 0, Cleaned Bowled. My Mother: 82, exactly
If God were to write about himself, there would be a million controversies. But when the God of cricket writes his autobiography, it becomes a best seller!
Though we have never met, in our home, no mention of Tendulkar can ever be without a heavy tinge of nostalgia and his humble humanity.
As for the book, Playing It My Way, it is more a chronology of events of one of history’s great sporting icons. Easy to follow, if you are a cricket fan; and, if you are not, you would not be holding the book. Think of a game, a year, a match or a series; one finds each episode duly compartmentalised. The book is an easy read. A few pages at a time. A bit over a cup of tea. Another few pages on the couch. It can be put down and picked up again without missing a beat. Open any page and there one finds bits of information. There are few statistics and one is thankful for that.
The man comes across as a boy throughout. He likes to play. That he has mastered his craft and reached Olympian heights is secondary. That just happened. He is a man after my heart. A foodie, he praises his mutton and fish and kebabs with aplomb. None of the hypocrisy usually dished out by those across the divide. And he still is God’s man. Prayers and temples are an integral part of the family. Anjali, Sara and Arjun find loving mention. And, there is the rest of his kin: mom, dad, the brothers and, of course, Achrekar Sir.
Sachin phoned my mother on 13 May 1998, her last birthday. But things went awry. An avid Sachin fan, but nearly paralysed, she would watch his every match, commenting on his every dismissal as if her world had collapsed. A close friend, sports journalist Pradeep Vijaykar, had arranged for her God to call and wish her. It was to become a comedy of errors.
A few months earlier, the author had written a limerick lambasting Anil Kumble for that rash shot in Canada. The next morning, over the speakerphone, a friend called, pretending to be Anil. Mom recognised the voice and said, “Mr Dhoria, I know it’s you.”
So when Sachin called, mom thought it was another one of my pranks. “No, Mrs Malcolm, I AM Sachin Tendulkar.” Mom referred to the name Sachin and asked him what it meant! Stumped, bowled, hit wicket? Or all three?
And yes, I was never forgiven. “I should have recognised that voice,” was all she kept repeating. But she died happy. Thanks, Sachin. Thanks ever so much. It was the greatest of all gifts. Maybe she too had a hand in the hundred 100s.
The story of that 100 is one that every reader will look for. It’s on page 376—information for the impatient. A lot has been written about the ‘quest’ by others, but only the achiever can understand the turmoil in the mind. Sunil Gavaskar had once told Sachin that his greatest achievement was 10,000 test runs. For Sachin, it was the centuries. To each his own. The lifting of the weight is a story by itself.
To tell the truth, the book looks like a hasty job. The very first sentence is not grammatically correct in the classical sense. “Who do I acknowledge first…” But, when your willow talks, who cares about the niceties of Queen’s English? It is the sweet pulp that one is after; and the book has a lot of it. 
In Vijay Merchant’s words, the ball was meant to be hit. Sachin did it more than most. The book tells you how he did it.


Traffic police must remove illegally parked vehicles, says HC

It is not the duty of a cooperative housing society or CHS to remove illegally parked vehicle from its approach road. Traffic police must prevent illegal parking on roads so as to allow fire fighting vehicles reaching the spot in case of emergency, the Bombay High Court said


The Bombay High Court has asked traffic police to take necessary steps for preventing parking of vehicles on the access road lane to facilitate easy egress and ingress for fire fighting vehicles.


Hearing a case filed by Mumbai-based Mount Unique Cooperative Housing Society Ltd, the bench of Justices Ranjit More and Anuja Prabhudessai said, "How can the Society remove parked vehicle on public road? It is the duty of police to do that".


The Fire Brigade on 5 January 2013 had issued a notice to the Society under under section 6 and Rule 9 (1) of the Maharashtra Fire Prevention and Life Safety Measures Act, 2006. The notice had directed Mount Unique CHS to remove illegally parked cars on the public road as it would be a hindrance to the fire brigade from reaching the building in case of a fire.


Challenging the order from the Fire Brigade, the Society submitted before the Court that "only access to Mount Unique CHS is the small lane on which members of the Society as well others are parking cars, which may create impediment in the egress and ingress of the fire fighting vehicles in case of emergency. Despite repeated requests, members from the Society and other persons are refusing to remove their cars from the road lane in question."


The Assistant Public Prosecutor did not dispute that it was the responsibiliy of the state authorities to keep the said road lane obstruction free so as to allow free access to the fire fighting vehicles in case of emergency.


While disposing the writ petition, the Bench said, "Respondent Nos. 3, 4 and 5 (authorities) are directed to take necessary steps for preventing the parking of all types of vehicles on the access road-lane to the Petitioner's society in order to facilitate the easy egress and ingress for fire fighting vehicles."


AirAsia flight QZ8501 debris found

The AirAsia flight from Surbaya to Singapore went down on Sunday and has been the focus of an international search effort


Indonesian rescue choppers looking for signs of the AirAsia flight QZ8501 spotted its wreckage and bodies of victims during search operations today, news agency Reuters reported.


The flight had lost contact early on Sunday when it had asked Air Traffic Control permission to fly higher due to bad weather. Unlike the Malaysian Airlines MH370 that went missing earlier this year, the wreckage was finally spotted after two days od intensive search and rescue operations with many countries from the Asia Pacific region involved.


The debris from the plane was spotted off the island of Borneo by the Java Sea.

Latest reports suggested that about 40 bodies had been pulled out of the sea so far. As images of the dead and the debris were broadcast on television, Tony Fernandes tweeted his committment to extend all of AirAsia's support in whichever way possible.


About 30 ships and 21 aircraft from Indonesia, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and the United States had been involved in the search of up to 10,000 square nautical miles, the Reuters report said.


Bambang Soelistyo, Indonesia’s National Search and Rescue Agency chief said, "God blessed us today, At 12:50 the air force Hercules found an object described as a shadow at the bottom of the sea in the form of a plane."


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